Hello! As you enjoy mid-summer, here is news and inspiration from me...
Healers, therapists, teachers, energy workers - those in the helping professions love to give. This is a precious thing; this concern for others. The question is, and I am including myself, "do we know how to receive?" This can be a challenge. Often when we place ourselves directly in nature, we receive. Perhaps this is why, when I am immersed in nature, I feel revitalized. The natural beauty, the air, the space fills me up and I feel replenished.
This August, wherever you are, can you find time to exist in nature? Can you slow down, play a little, and interrupt your routine? Our capacity to receive and play are indicators of health. Give yourself permission to rekindle your sense of play - relax and be. This may not come naturally and/or you may notice judgment or resistance arising. The process of unwinding can take time, especially as many of us are influenced by the prevailing cultural notions that productivity and achievement rule.
This July, as is our family’s custom, we took time to play together in Kennebunkport, Maine. I paddle boarded, kayaked, swam, surfed, rode my bike, walked, and practiced yoga. Three mornings a week, at 6:15 am, I participated in an outdoor boot camp by the ocean’s edge. What a glorious way to start the day! Check out www.getouttherefitness.com, an amazing outdoor workout led by the enthusiastic Leslie Caroll-Fleming.
One of the highlights of our time was when my two daughters and I participated in Special Surfers Night. Special Surfers is a non-profit organization providing opportunities for people with special needs to surf. There is no cost to individuals, and equipment is provided. My girls and I joined hundreds of local volunteers to help young people experience the joy of surfing. The thirteen-year-old young man I assisted has cerebral palsy. His humour, determination and willingness to receive touched me. Being involved in this event filled me up and I felt immense gratitude to be included in this community. Gordon Hinkle wrote, “One of the great ironies of life is this: he or she who serves almost always benefits more than he or she who is served.” It turns out, the more we give, the happier we tend to feel.We are wired to care for each other.
I have started sharing yoga in Kennebunkport. I taught a couple of classes above the new LIVE café that is home to Maine Revoloution – a fabulous Indoor Cycling Studio owned by instructor Lindsey Heard. Yoga is a common language that bridges countries, cultures, ages, etc. Contributing and sharing builds community ties and allows us to feel connection, enhancing our health and well-being.
TURNING TOWARDS FALL . . .
I am offering a Trauma Informed Yoga Seriesat The Healing Therapy Alliance for six Mondays beginning September 23rd. This series will fill to capacity, so if you are interested, please contact me soon if you are interested. Learn more >
I am involved in the corporate wellness movement. This month I am offering a two-hour workshop on Optimizing Women’s Health for a large organization in Toronto. If you are interested in having me come to speak to, or lead a group, get in touch with me. I love to bring wellness to different populations and venues. Topics I am happy to discuss include:
Approximately half of my time is allocated to offering private yoga sessions that can be tailored specifically to meet your needs; I love this. Private sessions allow me to meet you exactly where you are. Invest in yourself! Here are some of the possibilities we can explore together:
building a home practice
If you would prefer to join me in a group class, find me teaching yoga at 889 Community in Rosedale. Click here for my schedule.
For a summer read, try The Book of Joy: Lasting Happiness in a Changing World, with his Holiness the Dalai Lama and Archbishop Desmond Tutu. In 2015, Archbishop Tutu traveled to the Dalai Lama’s Home in Dharamsala, India to celebrate his Holiness’s eightieth birthday and create a gift for others. That is, they endeavoured to answer the timeless question: How do we find joy in the face of life’s suffering? Both leaders suggest that suffering is a necessary ingredient for life; certainly for developing compassion. Can you see your own difficulties as fuel for growth? This is a simple, delightful read underscoring that the purpose of life is to discover happiness and that the ultimate source of happiness resides within us. The good news is that happiness can be cultivated and lived. And our greatest joy is lived in loving, generous relationships with others. Joy Practices are included at the back of the book. Leaf through; pick and choose chapters that speak to you. You don’t have to go in order!
May you enjoy a peaceful and joyful summer.